Suburbs Benefit From an Urban President, Too

In fact, says one planner, suburbs and exurbs can expect to see some of the biggest changes of all, at least from infrastructure and transportation funding.
December 22, 2008, 6am PST | Judy Chang
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"Tired of long commutes and keen on sustainability and community, suburban citizens have already expressed interest in transforming their areas into densified microcities by building town squares and mixed-use spaces and incorporating public transportation. Obama's support of community and connectivity offers a great opportunity for these microcities to evolve more rapidly across the country.

Over the last few decades, U.S. commuters have shunned rail in favor of superhighways. As a result, America's infrastructure includes a vast network of abandoned rail rights-of-way that offer the potential to regionally reconnect cities and suburbs. Today, there is growing momentum around putting more resources and focus into the transit oriented design (TOD) principles that are the backbone of our evolving smaller cities and suburban or small town downtowns. By developing areas around rail systems, trolleys, subways and more, our downtown areas become more livable, walkable, sustainable and community oriented. The infrastructure plan should explore the necessary funding to revive rail transit and consider other forms of public transportation that are better suited towards today's needs."

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Published on Monday, December 15, 2008 in Marketwatch
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